Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Third time pays for all!

yay! finally got Yellow Dog Linux (ver. 6.2) to install on our PS3! turned the video-game master system into a fully-fledged computer! (and it only took three tries.)

(turned out the problem with my first two attempts was the version of Toast i'd used to burn the install dvd.)

for programming, it has Java & Python & Perl, along with C and C++; then it also includes a whole slough of office & productivity software, plus stuff for a web server. 1098 software packages & components to install!

no more being limited to software-development-slacking on my iBook; now i can do it on our 40" HD tv!

Monday, November 9, 2009

In Through The Small Door

ok, so we've got the giant desk down through the bulkhead into the basement corridor leading to our apartment (with Paul's help), and Barb & i have now slid/pulled/pushed the behemoth all the way down to our doorway.

but it looks too big to fit through (or rather the doorway is too small); the desk has four short carved legs on the corners, but it also has two additional legs in the middle for extra support.

and despite all kinds of wiggling, jiggling, and other spatial niggling, it simply cannot fit through the doorway! (even with the door taken off the hinges) we can get it in past the outer legs, but not the inner.

i really don't want to lose those extra legs in the middle of the desk; but they're the only things preventing the desk moving through the doorway. so i take out the screws that seem to be holding the extra legs in place, but the legs still don't budge. maybe they're glued in. my wife has gone upstairs by now; she maybe doesn't want to watch the coming emergency surgery.

i'd hate to have to saw off those legs and then later have to try to reattach them, but i see little other choice. where's our hand saw? in the end i resort to the last refuge of the frustrated man -- i give one leg a good solid thump; maybe i can knock the damned things loose.

and it does give a tiny little bit. i thump it again. again, a little movement; but the whole inside lower edge of the chair-hole also moves. can i take out the leg without ripping apart the desk itself?

after a few more solid thumps (and cracking off some molding around the leg), it begins to wiggle a little and then grudgingly slides out of its socket like a bad tooth under pressure. success!

now, can i do the same thing to the other inside leg, or will my luck run out? i offer a quick prayer to the powers that be and begin whacking the other leg. it seems more solidly anchored, but with repeated whacks (and prying off the molding) it too begins to yield; finally, it slides out. whoo hoo!!!

now i can jiggle-step the up-ended monster desk through the doorway (while i'm also praying the neighbors won't complain to the management about all the whacking), and i slowly navigate it (after re-inserting the extra legs and adding new screws) into place in our basement office; it's like steering the Titanic to its berth (instead of sending it through the North Atlantic).

i put the glass top back on (with some help from the best wife ever), and it's finished (except for removing the white paint and restoring the rich wood)! my first gargantuan desk, hooray!

(although that probably means that i have to actually get something DONE at it. oh well; back to "work".)

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Best Desk Day -- thank you Paul!!!

yesterday, the mrs & i were making our usual Friday consignment shop rounds, beginning of course at Table To Teapots. i went in and looked at the bargain rack: nothing. then, nearby, i see this enormous white desk.

white desk, i think, i don't want a white desk. but it was pretty nice -- huge like a piano (with carved legs and everything) and it was topped with a giant sheet of furniture glass. i had to go over and look.

on closer inspection, it's only white because someone slapped on a fast coat of white paint; underneath, it's a dark wood. the price? $49. forty-nine dollars! i remove the price sticker (the way of laying claim to a large item), just in case i might be interested.

i walk away. start back at the asian & antiques end of the store, closer to the entrance. do i really need a desk? the desks we have are enough, aren't they?

but a few minutes later, i'm back at the desk; it's too good of a price to ignore. now i'm opening the extra-long drawers of this gargantua. small drawers on the left, and some large drawer/slide thing on the right inside the right side is a metal tag: Property of / RAYTHEON / MFG Co / 16207.

it's a Raytheon desk! whoo hoo!

figuring out the spring mechanism, i pull out the giant drawer; and it suddenly slides up and locks into place as a right-angle extension on the right side of the desk.

my wife, also looking at this and that, sees i'm clearly smitten. "We have to buy that, you know," she says, smiling. (not that we really have any room for it in our basement offices; but we'll make room.) now we just have to get it home.

then a man comes up to me; he's been looking at some antique-looking wash-stand (a hoosier, my wife tells me, a free-standing kitchen cabinet). "Do you work here?" he asks.

no, i answer; and then he tell me that his wife has him picking up the cabinet he's been looking for. i know that the consignment store staff aren't supposed to help people move furniture, so i offer to help him move the piece out to his car.

my wife comes back; she's made a call with a friend who can maybe help us in a few days. a store worker comes up and asks if we're going to buy the desk; my wife says yes.

the guy i'm helping looks at the giant desk and says, "Where do you guys live?" we say nearby, and he offers to give us a ride in the panel van he's rented. he says his name is Paul.

instant salvation! i love this town!

as we load the stuff into his van, my wife goes across the street and buys a box of yummy pastries for a thank you gift. we make the trip across town, and he even helps me carry the desk down the bulkhead stairs.

thank you Paul!


[next post: how i got the darned thing into our basement]

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Hooray! Autumn is here!

Chill is in the morning air; the just-past-Full moon hangs in the crisply blue sky; and the snowbirds are starting to head South & West. Can hardly wait for the first real snow; love the change in seasons!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

family stuff

wow, i never knew how hard family stuff would be -- how difficult to handle. i just had no idea.

i'm not saying it's not worth it; i'm just saying that i was unprepared.

thank gods that i had as much time as i did to grow up (a little) myself before starting off on this journey.

Monday, November 2, 2009

November cheer

now i remember November -- coldish, dark early, and somewhat grey-looking out.

even our normally cheery parakeets seem somewhat subdued this afternoon.

maybe a steaming cup of steaming hot chocolate would help (me)!


Sunday, November 1, 2009

hey, peeps.

happy November, all.

did we all survive another Halloween?
have we recovered from diabetic comas?
(or at least most of us?) close enough.

now for the nightmare before Christmas. :-D

Saturday, October 31, 2009

to enjoy life . . .

All I ever wanted,
All I ever needed
Is here in my arms.

Words are very
They can only do harm.

- Depeche Mode, 'Enjoy The Silence'

Thursday, October 29, 2009

quiet home; quiet life

mmm, feels like i'm getting old. gettin' on toward bedtime, and the house is quiet. the birds are calmly munching seed in a clean cage; everyone is satisfied.

another good day.

g'nite all.

Monday, October 26, 2009

lure and allure

guess i don't need a Master's Degree in Computational Linguistics after all. the lure and allure of Brandeis University won me (briefly) over; but what turned out in the end to be the wisdom of my wife (and life) helped me see what i really needed and wanted to do.

so i guess it's back to writing games in Java and not so much Cognitive Linguistics (though still probably a little).

now there's time for a little more reading -- yay!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

time - life

time to watch 'When Harry Met Sally' again.

when life is particularly difficult, return to what makes you feel most alive; return to love.

yay, life!

Smaug lands

human suffering -- we sure all know a lot about that now, don't we.

what's more terrible than a fire-breathing dragon? a miserable person who spreads misery to everyone around them; at least with the dragon, it's usually over quickly.

what's more challenging than finding one's path in life? sticking to that path once its found.

anybody out there know of any good suspended-animation facilities?


Smaug flying over the moon (w/strings attached)

Took this in South Yarmouth, MA, this past August.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Newcomb Hollow gull, Wellfleet, MA

[This was taken during our (slightly early) 1st anniversary celebration. Yay, beach!]

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

sunset clouds

another recent pic from my Facebook page.


local chipmunk, Chuck


Friday, July 31, 2009

Seldom bother to voice strong opinions.

It's rarely worth all the grief you'll get. (heh ;-)

Friday, July 24, 2009

F the Cambridge Police

i just heard (in a televised phone interview) Officer Crowley (of the Cambridge Police, who arrested Professor Gates) say (in reference to arresting Gates on his own property) "I treat everyone the same."

ok, so maybe he's not a rascist; maybe he's just a shitty cop.

how would you like it if you can't say what you want on your own property (to a cop or to anyone) -- that you might be arrested for it?

maybe the gun people are right -- maybe more people should carry guns and not let the police (who all carry guns themselves) push us around so much.

[at least i can still say what i want on my blog. hopefully i won't have to some up with bail.]

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

blog vs Facebook

have been Facebooking a lot lately; no blog entries. much more social & small-talkish, but hey; who am i to blow against the wind? ;-)

parakeets quiet tonight. fresh seed and water. little do they know their impending changes. (more later.)

happy summer, all.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

goodbye, bad Miss California; hello, good!

yay! --Donald Trump finally gets rid of Carrie Prejean as Miss California and welcomes Tami Farrell into the position.

turns out it was her unwillingness to perform contractual obligations that got her canned, rather than her gross prejudices (blanket opposition to gay marriage) or racy modeling photos; but i say 'good riddance to bad rubbish' anyway.

here's a NY Times link:


(you see, I'M somewhat prejudiced against people with such outspoken prejudices; and i'm also unwilling to be silent and not say 'hah, hah' when they get their comeuppance. c'est dommage.)

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

hooray New Hampshire!

another same-sex marriage triumph! phooey on prejudice and discrimination; c'mon, the rest of you states -- get with it!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Americans Idle

boo on conservative viewers (or weak-minded, church-obeying sheep) who voted for Kris Allen (because he seemed more conventional), when Adam Lambert is clearly the superior vocalist.

oh well; what should we expect from a country who twice elected George W despite his complicity in war crimes (and just obvious general stupidity and lack of wit)? not much, i guess.

at least Lambert won't be saddled with that dreadful 'song' that Kara helped create (which the winner will have to put on his first album, due to contractual obligations).

maybe Lambert will perform some shows with the remaining Queen members and revive some of Freddie Mercury's sadly missed vocal showmanship & talent.

good luck and good wishes to Adam Lambert!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

hooray for Maine!

yay, Maine becomes the fifth state to legalize gay marriage -- and it's my birthday too! yay world!

hah hah, gay marriage nay-sayers. and hah hah, Miss California (with the breast augmentations paid for by the Miss California pageant people to help her compete in the Miss USA contest).

may traditional marriage go the way of the rule of thumb.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

who the hell is Steve Harvey?

i've just been listening to an interview with him on Good Morning America. WHAT A MAN-HATING ASSHOLE!

he claims that men can only love women in three ways (the three Ps): Profess, Provide, Protect. to me it's complete crap!

ok, maybe not COMPLETE crap, but still crap. maybe a lot of men do fall into that category; but certainly not ALL of them. (at least not the ones worth being with. i think that any man who's only capable of the three Ps is a worthless piece of shit.)

whenever i hear people having such low expectations of men, all i can think is that they haven't made much real effort to meet decent ones.

ugh. don't get me wrong -- i'm still not much of a man fan, but i also believe that low expectations will lead you to low men.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Hooray Vermont! Gay marriage!

(And Iowa, Connecticut, & Massachusetts of course.)

Now just 46 more states to go!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

no no == yes yes

I will not promise not to have double negatives.

Programming is fun!

Having a family is work, but also fun.


(And I got new tubes & tires for my bicycle; yay cycling!)

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

hey, peoples . . .

so, are we all still in shock from the continuing economic meltdown? convinced now (finally) that there isn't any solidity to any financial stuff anymore? good, now time to get on with it -- the post-economic life, that is.

get ready, i say, for continuing government takeovers & ownerships of previously private endeavor. creeping communism, basically. it's not such a bad thing, considering what horrors big insurance & finance are. get ready (finally) for the end of the "American Dream", i'm afraid. (and with it, the end of the wealthy class.)

maybe we have some time before things really crumble -- possibly even ten or twenty years. or perhaps we have six months or a year unless we make some radical changes.

i guess it's time for humanity to grow up and stop being obsessed with acquiring material possessions. what's left? learning and self-improvement. read a book. learn to paint, or how to play the guitar. have fun! :-)